Friday, July 17, 2009

I want to be Harry's girl.......

So, yes we made it to midnight showing/opening night of 'Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince' and lived to tell about it. We attended in costume, but I will let Jenn blog more on that because she has all of the good photos on her camera. While watching the movie I just happened to notice that, hey that Harry Potter is getting kind of hot. So I googled 'Daniel Radcliffe' and discovered that he was born one year after I graduated from high school. But he's still legal, therefore any impure thoughts that I may or may not have have involving him are ok. Right?
Jenn says: Go get 'em, cougar. But I do remember when he was doing Equus on Broadway and promoting it all over TV land, I happened to watch a snippet of said promotion during "Inside the Actor's Studio" (it is on Bravo so I'm bound to see it sometime)....and he wasn't wearing a shirt and he looked yummy. Yes, I know - Hello, Pot!
Deana says: But do I have to be called a 'cougar'? I just hate that. Isn't there something else? How about 'sugar mama'? Nope. That is worse. And I'm broke, so that won't work. Hot old American lady?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

We're Harry Potter Geeks

So Grand Master B is now 16 and, although he is seriously misguided, believes himself to "be a grown man, Mom." He has abandoned many of his old childhood interests, but not Harry Potter. No way. I discovered the book "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" (the original title as published in England) in 1998. Frankly, it was not my usual sort of book purchase as 1) it was about a magical world with witches & warlocks, dragons & evil sorcerers and I'm not generally a supernatural, Dungeons & Dragons type of girl and 2) it was a children's book. But B was just turning 6 and loved to read - just like me. I thought it was something that might interest him and that we could read together...and we did. We loved this book and anxiously awaited the next release in the series over the next 9 years. We read every book together, with me reading out loud to B using clever voices like the nerd I am (except for the last book because he was "too old" to be read to). Since the release of the movies, we have watched each one in the theater and collected all the DVDs. About a year ago, Deana's son Mr. Sam was spending the night. Grand Master B and I introduced this beautiful, creative, imaginative boy to the world of Harry Potter...and wonder of wonders he loved it, too. Since then, the love of all things Potter has spread to include Princess Izzy and Deana (Dave had already read all the books). So we've all been anxiously awaiting the premiere of the 6th movie "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Price" which is this week - 7/15/2009. And like the geeks we are, this band of merrymakers already has their tickets...for the midnight showing on Wednesday the 15th. This is the first time I've ever been to the midnight premiere but we bought tickets online and all of us are going - even Jim (though it is possible that he is a bit less enthusiastic about this midnight adventure than the rest of us). Mr. Sam is going dressed as Harry Potter which is cute and funny because he is 5. I am going dressed in dark jeans/T-shirt with a large, black witch's hat purchased as a souvenir (for Mr. Sam) from our recent trip to see "Wicked" which is totally dorky, but still funny because I am not 5. I have yet to inform Grand Master B of this addition to my wardrobe because I want the mortification to be fresh on the night of the actual event. But I will end this post by sharing my new favorite pic of B. He got his braces off a few weeks ago and his teeth look amazing. I actually got him to smile wide for a photo of those gorgeous chompers. I love it!

Deana says: As for the Harry Potter premier, I told my husband, just for fun let's call him 'He who cannot be named' (What? It fits with the post!) about the outing and he wanted to know if we got him a ticket. Ooops. Well, he probably wouldn't have been off work in time any way......

Saturday, July 11, 2009

A New Direction

In the course of several telephone calls between Deana and I today, we began discussing the crap hands life has dealt both of us lately (and by lately, I might personally mean too effing long...but hey, that's just me). Naturally, we hashed over and shared all the ways we have coped with said stress. And frankly, I'm super impressed with our abilities and kind of astounded by the similarity of our philosophies as we actually have very different temperaments. Our combined experiences have left us with a unique perspective on this journey we call life, as well as a few tried-and-true strategies to find and create joy in one's life rather than just survive each day. And that's when it hit us: We should become life coaches. Now, obviously it takes time, persistence, marketing and word of mouth to become successful in this business...and, of course, your coaching needs to produce results. To kick start our new roles, we'd like to offer four proven strategies for dealing with adversity and improving the joy in your life.
  • Be open to change in your life, including new ideas, things and people.Sometimes we get too caught up in our own comfort zone. We become entrenched in outdated habits, suspicious of new people, judgmental of foreign concepts and ideas and closed off to change. Now I am the first to admit that I do not like change per se, but some of the best moments in my life and some of my closest friends came by taking a chance and embracing change. The photo above is an example of a new friend I met one night when the girls were out on a 'Bad Mommies' night. By moving outside my immediate circle of friends to include someone new, I (and by extension the other gals) got the opportunity to get to know a really great guy...for that night anyway. This particular encounter did not develop into a friendship. But I was open to change and took the plunge into the unknown. I feel that I am a better person for this and I think you can see that he was just as glad to have met me.
  • Acknowledge the beauty in yourself, develop your talents and seek out creativity every day.
You may not be aware of this, but Deana has a very strong background in 'The Theater', including a BFA in Acting as culmination of her undergraduate years at UNL. At one point in time, Deana intended a career as an actress. However, life (and the need for reliable employment, a steady paycheck and the ability to eat at regular intervals) has moved her from that career in the arts to one in law (while you can make the argument that there is an awful lot of acting that goes on in the legal profession, I work in medicine and throw no stones). And it turned out that Deana absolutely loves her work. But she has not abandoned creativity and expression in her life. We have regular scary-oke, I mean karaoke nights which are so much fun and very therapeutic. Never forget the healing power of song...or dance, or crafting, or art. Whatever your passion, make sure to include it in your everyday life. Celebrate the majesty of who you are and the power inside of you.

  • Recapture the adventurous spirit of childhood, the freedom to completely let go and enjoy the moment.
I cannot stress the importance of "letting it all go" enough. Each of us has a job, a family, a home and financial obligations that demand the majority of our time and attention. This is good and as it should be for the most part. But as with everything in life, balance is the key. Too many people become so focused on the "grown-up responsibilities" that they forget life is supposed to be fun. Savoring each opportunity to surround ourselves with positivity, to choose joy and to purposely seek out fun & relaxation leads to improved mental health...not to mention an undeniable attractiveness. Just check out my good friend Kozy. He has adopted this particular strategy as personal mantra of sorts and it has proven extremely successful.

  • Always remember to be the best friend you can be to those that you love and they will return your love and kindness in abundance.
I was lucky enough to have met Deana when I was 18 years old at the start of my freshman year at UNL. I feel even luckier that our friendship has not just lasted but also prospered over the intervening years (though I will not say just how many years that has been - a lady never reveals her age). We have also been lucky enough to have introduced each other to many other friends, most very, very nice people but a couple real douchebags (c'mon, you know I mean your law-school buddy Johanna...and don't forget my asshat ex). Yet, many of these people have become very close to both of us, forming a circle of love and trust that surrounds us daily.

We hope that you have enjoyed this installment in our never ending quest for self-improvement. We are planning on making this a recurring theme, perhaps Life Coaching Saturdays. I don't know that we'll make it every Saturday- to be honest it depends on our social calendars. But since our dance cards have been shockingly EMPTY of late I'd say the odds are good for another life lesson next weekend. Pass the word about our services. Maybe someday we could even get paid for bestowing these tidbits of our accumulated could happen. Money would be great but we would settle for a couple of whistles. Really.


I am sitting here listening to the radio at work. Yes, I know it is Saturday, what is your point? Have you been talking to my husband? Anyway, so they play this REO Speedwagon song, which yes I am singing along to in my office and when it's over, the DJ comes on and says how much he loves REO and that song in particular because it's 'peppy', his word not mine, and filled with so much l-o-v-e, again his phrasing. What song you may ask? 'Take it on the Run'. I kid you not. If you're unfamiliar, here is the first chorus --

Heard it from a friend who
Heard it from a friend who
Heard it from another you been messin' around
They say you got a boy friend
You're out late every weekend
They're talkin' about you and it's bringin' me down

How is that filled with love? Wait. Do you think he meant it was filled with love because this hussy is giving it up all over town? I suppose that is one way for a song to be filled with love. If you squint and think about it......

Jenn says: Ah, another moron - I'm so proud. Apparently it takes as much 'talent' to be a disc jockey as it does to be a sports announcer...which in my estimation is VERY little. It's like they just talk and talk without ever really hearing the lunacy of what they are saying. I actually heard a TV sports announcer say "You know [insert name of idiotic sportscaster of choice here], the team that puts the most points up on that board is gonna win this game".... Really?!? How insightful.

My children don't appreciate me

So, it's Friday night. I've taken the kids to Blockbuster, got them a couple of movies. We had dinner watched their silly movies, I took a little nap during the Barbie one, they went downstairs to re-enact something they've just watched, I got to watch this week's episode of 'Rescue Me' that I missed on Tuesday (yeah firemen!) and I think, hey let's sing a little on-demand, Karaoke, like you do. I turn it on, discover a plethora of 'Supremes' music and decide to give my children they're first lesson on being a 'supreme'. This is how it goes. Princess Izzy, with her pink microphone in hand screams at me to stop singing because she wants to 'sing by herself' like she's Celine Dion or something. She doesn't even know the words. Mister Sam doesn't pay attention at all. He used to love this. Now he is too busy doing some sort of 5 yr old modified Akihito roll off of the love sack which he ends by trying to impale our couch with a piece of train track because he's watched 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' one too many times this week. Are they impressed with the dance moves I'm trying to teach them? No. Are they impressed that their mother knows every single word of these songs by heart and doesn't even have to look at the screen? No. Ok, I'll give them that one, they can't read, they have no idea. Do they have any idea of the magnitude of the gift I am so desperately trying to give them? No. I don't even know why I try.....

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Independence Day

Although this posting is several days tardy, we really enjoyed a lovely weekend celebrating the 4th of July. We kicked things off with the annual White Trash Bash held by a dear friend...we'll call her the Social Director. It is as delightfully tacky as it sounds. Every year on the eve of the 4th we set up lawn chairs, a boom box, a charcoal grill and a kiddie pool on the front lawn and celebrate. We come dressed in our best version of white trash couture and apply temporary tattoos liberally (in just the places that you're imagining). The hostess provides burgers and dogs while the rest of us bring sides and desserts. And, of course, it's strictly BYOB - preferably in continuation of the theme. My husband's drink of choice was a grape variety of Mad Dog 20/20, which in some sort of masochistic ritual dating back to his fraternity days he forced himself to consume in its entirety from the bottle (back off ladies, he's taken). Others were pulling on Old English Malt Liquor, PBR and Arbor Mist. I had fond college memories of Mickey's 40 ounce...until I remembered the massive hangover that accompanies drinking a 40 of Mickey's. The highlight of the evening was a "White Trash Food & Wine Pairing" put together by your favorite two chippies. But I'll let Deana post more about that later (um, since she drafted the WT Wine Pairing before I wrote this post, it actually posted before...good to know) .

On the actual 4th of July, the Judge was kind enough to host several of us for dinner, kiddie activities and fireworks at a local country club. It was very family oriented - lots of bouncy houses, obstacle courses and pony rides. The children had a blast! And the adults really enjoyed the relaxing atmosphere and GREAT food. And of course, the fireworks were amazing. The sky was lit up fantastically over the beautiful grounds of the golf course. So many feelings of pride, awe and patriotism are inspired in me every Independence Day. It was the perfect ending to a wonderful weekend...that has in typical fashion turned to absolute shit. But more on that later as well.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

White Trash Wine Tasting

As Jenn previously mentioned, at our dear friend's fabulous 'White Trash Bash', she and I designed our own 'White Trash Wine Dinner' loosely modeled after the fabulous wine dinners that Jenn's husband hosts every month at the restaurant that he manages. It was, I dare say, a smashing success, due in part to the influence of Little Jim, whom I'm sure you will recognize from previous posts. (As an aside, my photography skills have recently been called into question. I can assure you that it is totally my crappy camera not 'pilot error' as somebody so eloquently put it and when I say eloquently, I mean 'smart ass'; and I had the same amount to drink when I took them as everyone else did, your honor.) That being said, on with the show...

First course- Spray cheese from a can, American, it was the 4th of July, after all, served on Chicken in a Biscuit crackers paired with Bartel's and James Fuzzy Navel wine coolers for that flashback to high school.

Second course- Iceberg lettuce with your choice of Ranch or the local favorite, Dorothy Lynch dressing and a slice of wonder bread. Just like Grandma used to make. This was paired with a lovely Boones Farm Strawberry Hill, which really played off the iceberg lettuce nicely. No forks, by the way, this is a white trash wine dinner.

Third course-Campbell's condensed bean with bacon soup paired with a Wild Vine Strawberry White Zinfandel. For this course the soup was served in the Dixie cups, instead of the wine and each diner took a shot of the wine straight out of the bottle. Again, just like Grandma's house.

Fourth course- For our main course we chose a lovely Banquet zesty meat meal paired with Franzia chilled red wine from a box. Don't ask me what kind of meat it was, all the package said was 'meat'. I think it is better not to know.

Fifth course- For dessert we paired a lovely Mad Dog 20 20, 'Purple Rain' with an assortment of wafer cookies, again just like at Grandma's house. Hmm. I am sensing a theme that I think we may have missed........

The wine 'dinner' was a smashing success and to celebrate, Little Jim decided to get smashed himself and immediately dived headfirst into a mason jar full of Budweiser. I am sad to report that this was indeed his down fall, as later in the evening he took a nose dive out of the pocket of my housecoat where I thought he had passed out, and decapitated himself. Luckily there were a couple of doctors at the party, albeit Juris Doctors, but they really know their away around tub and tile caulk and toothpicks, and miraculously they put Little Jim back together again. Sans one teeny tiny hole in his head that could not be salvaged. But hey, now he's more like his namesake. If anyone would like any of our recipes, just shoot me an email. I'll be happy to direct to the sections of the grocery store where I purchased each course........

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Bad Mommies Club

We had our "Bad Mommies" club "meeting" last night. My last memory was asking the Judge to call my husband and then passing out on her couch, where I woke up this morning at 6:30. I let her dogs out, met her husband in the kitchen on my way to the bathroom, let the dogs back in, went home, showered, got ready for work, sucked up to my husband (No, not like that!) stopped on my way to work to get a diet coke "as big as my head" as Jenny White would say, and was still here by 8 a.m. Do I have a slight headache? Maybe. I am still a little drunk? Perhaps, but I am here!!! For all of you 21, 22 year olds who go out on a Wednesday night and can't make it in to work on time or at all, this is how it's done!!! And in the words of Little Jim, I am not an alcoholic, I do not go to meetings.........